Best Healthy Copycat Starbucks Banana Bread

I really don’t like Starbucks. I would actually go so far as to say they’re one of the worst places for coffee on the list of worst cups of coffee, right behind Chick-fil-A and just above Max Medina’s parent-teacher seminar (sorry, currently watching Gilmore Girls). Seriously, Starbucks coffee tastes like burnt coffee grounds brewed in lukewarm dirt water. But their baked goods? Different story. I don’t know what it is because I’m 500% certain they all come directly out of frozen packaging and go straight in the microwave. I even eat their egg white turkey bacon English muffin, which sort of tastes like cardboard if you think about it too long, but I digress. Starbucks banana bread is thick, fluffy, and perfectly spiced. I’ve tested multiple recipes, trying to recreate a healthier version of it without sacrificing on taste, and I’m excited to share what I think is a very accurate (and healthy) copycat recipe!

What Makes This A Healthier Banana Bread Alternative?

I’m not sure about the Starbucks version, but I love that this healthy copycat recipe is completely dairy-free. I cut most dairy from my diet around four years ago but I love baking. Sadly, those two things don’t usually go hand in hand. Finding solid, dairy-free substitute ingredients that are on par with the originals is not always easy. Sometimes you just can’t make it work but that doesn’t stop me from trying! 

Here are the main substitutes I made in this recipe that boost the health factor:

  • Coconut oil in place of canola oil
  • Rolled oats in place of half the flour
  • Almond milk in place of buttermilk or 2% milk

Another potential substitute I imagine would taste great is organic applesauce in place of half—or all—of the sugar content. This would reduce the sweetness factor considerably but you could add in healthy semi-sweet chocolate chips with a higher cocoa content like I did to balance it out while still avoiding super processed sugars.

If you do experiment with the applesauce option, just note that you’ll have to compensate for the lost dry ingredients. Mix the applesauce in during the wet ingredients step. To the dry ingredients, add ½ cup additional rolled oats or flour as a binding agent to help ensure the batter isn’t too runny. 

A Few Baking Pointers
two overripe bananas with brown spotted peels

I used 3 overripe, medium-sized bananas for this. You can tell if your bananas are overripe by the brown color of the peel. You don’t want them so far gone that they’ve turned black, because then they are just a MESS to deal with (and the flavor isn’t great) but they should be slightly mushy. The more brown the banana peel, the sweeter the final recipe.

I have experimented with and altered this banana bread recipe to reach the ultimate level of moisture, texture, and hold. I can’t stand when any type of loaf bread just falls apart when you pick it up. That’s what I love about the Starbucks version. It’s so great for an on-the-go breakfast because you can just tear off chunks and eat it straight from the bag without it getting all crumbly and gross. 

chopped walnuts sit in a stone mortar and pestal

Be careful not to add too many chunky fillings or else you’ll ruin the integrity of this loaf. Resist the urge to dump a whole bag of chocolate chips into this. Be better than me. One cup of walnuts and/or pecans is all you need. If you want to add more nuts I would recommend using a mortar & pestle or pulsing them in the food processor for 10-15 seconds prior to folding them into the batter. The smaller, lighter pieces will be distributed more evenly throughout the bake. You can use this method for chocolate chunks as well!

This came out beautifully golden brown on top and just the slightest bit crispy on the outer edges. If you’re not into that, shave 5-10 minutes off the bake time and make sure to check on it periodically with a toothpick inserted in the center.

best chocolate chip banana bread recipe

Delicious Healthy Copycat Starbucks Banana Bread

Sofia
Moist, slightly textured, flavorful, and delicious. Everything that banana bread should be. Perfect as an on-the-go breakfast treat or go crazy and have it for dessert. Best served with a side of the blackest black coffee and a little drizzle of honey.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Baking Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 10
Calories 495 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Loaf Pan

Ingredients
 

Dry Ingredients

  • 1 ½ Cups Flour
  • ½ Cup Rolled Oats (not instant)
  • ½ Cup White Sugar
  • ½ Cup Packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Nutmeg

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 Egg
  • ½ Cup Coconut Oil (melted) You can also use 6 Tbsp of dairy-free butter
  • 2 Tbsp Almond Milk or Oat Milk
  • ½ tsp Vanilla
  • 3 Bananas Mashed

Fillings

  • 1 Cup Chopped Walnuts
  • 1 Cup Chocolate Chips or Chunks semi-sweet

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Get out two medium-sized mixing bowls and whisk.
  • In one bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, oats, both sugars, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg) and set aside.
  • In the other bowl, mash 3 bananas. Mix in the other wet ingredients (egg, coconut oil, almond milk, vanilla).
  • Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined. Fold in finely chopped walnuts and chocolate chips if desired.
  • Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. You can put foil over the top to prevent further browning if the loaf isn't quite done at the 50 minute mark.
  • Wait for loaf to cool slightly before turning out onto cutting board for serving.

Notes

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Keyword Banana Bread, Banana nut bread, Breakfast, Copycat recipe, Loaf bread, Sweet Breakfast

Let me know if you made this recipe and if you liked it! And of course, I love to hear how you put your own special twist on it. Feedback, comments, ideas, thoughts, and questions—throw them all in the comments! Don’t forget to use the hashtag #styledbysofia and tag me in your photos too!

Best Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe

2 thoughts on “Best Healthy Copycat Starbucks Banana bread”

  1. 5 stars
    I love your blog, it looks amazing 🤩 Oh how I love banana bread as well. It’s my weakness, I can’t wait to try the recipe and you gave some great tips on how to make it!!!

    1. Yay I am so glad you enjoyed reading and I really hope you try it!! Banana bread is definitely my weakness too… I’d love to hear how it turns out 🙂

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